You hire a software developer and want him to deliver you a superb application without any performance glitches. While the deadline is fixed and there are limited resources, his task of giving the best output looks doubly challenging. Obviously, one of the key procedures that you never want your developer to miss is the unit testing. It plays a crucial role to ensure building a fully operational and completely bug-free application.
Any software development company finds unit testing as an integral part of their process mainly because it drastically reduces the bugs. Naturally, it serves as a critical part of any software development process. Here through the length of this post, we are going to explain the key misconceptions about unit testing and how they benefit the software development process.
What is Unit Testing?
Let’s start with the basics, the definition of Unit Testing. It is not the type of testing which is carried out at the end of the development process just like the QA testing. As the name suggests, it is about testing the various units of the app during the development process.
It is performed during the coding of the app itself. By conducting unit testing throughout the development process you can reduce the bugs to a minimum level. The objective of unit testing is to find out and eradicate bugs before the customers detect them.
Unit testing is done to detect the logical flaws in various features and functions. When the app is required to incorporate the zip code within the user interface, a Unit Test will detect how it works like the way it is conceived to work logically. Basically, this testing method offers the developers confidence of building various functions of their app right and move ahead.
When building a large enterprise application, unit testing offers the ease of testing different software functions separately. By finding errors at every step and with every part of the development process such tests help to find errors quickly. So, Unit Testing removes the possibility of producing software full of bugs that may lead to increased development cost and time to market.
Key Misconceptions About Unit Testing
Software developers worldwide harbour several misconceptions about unit testing. While some consider it to be unnecessarily time consuming and counterproductive, there are several others who forget the differences with QA and static analysis along with the respective roles of each different process. Professional software testing services come in your aid to nullify such misconceptions and provide you with the real picture about unit testing.
Let us now explain a few misconceptions concerning unit tests.
1. Unit Test Is More Important Than Static Analysis
While to ensure the best development process, a software development company needs to utilise various testing and analysis tools and methods, each one of them has its own significance. You cannot consider static analysis at par with the unit test. Unit test works as the first and elementary defence against the software bugs and coding errors. It detects logical flaws in functions long before they are detected by the static analysis. Static analysis has its own importance but it is never effective during the programming stage.
2. It Is Radically Different From QA
While Unit Testing is basically done to detect errors during the programming and prevent them from getting into the final software product, QA process basically fixes the bugs and errors. Obviously, preventive measures to eradicate bugs long before they get into software products are more cost-effective than fixing them through the QA process.
3. It Is Also About Deploying The Right Logic
If you think, through unit tests you will get hold of only bugs and that is the only reason to utilise unit testing, you missed out on another important thing. Unit Testing is also done to fix the flaws in the logical flow of devising a function and it is also utilised by the developers to ensure a better understanding of the code.
4. Changing The Source Code Is Not Necessary
There is another big misconception about unit testing. Many think that changing the source code isn’t necessary for unit testing. But, to increase the test coverage and to ensure better testing output, sometimes the total architecture of the entire code needs to be taken within the ambit. It is really good to change the source code as well if that really helps in making the code structure better.
5. A Unit Test Is Only Utilitarian
There are many developers who still think that unit testing is done with a primary focus on making particular functions better and it has an only utilitarian objective to make the app functionally more useful. While this notion is partially correct, but apart from making certain functions work in the desired manner unit testing is also carried out to make the overall code structure better.
6. Good or bad unit test coding
Another major misconception is about writing good or bad unit test code. Actually, there is nothing as good unit test coding. You only need to write the code correctly. You only need to write perfectly testable code for the unit test.
7. The Unit Test Will Extend The Development Time Unnecessarily
Many developers coming under pressure to meet the deadline often cut the unit test from the process for saving time. Actually, they do it because of a lack of understanding about the importance of unit testing. Actually, through unit tests, you detect and prevent the bugs early that finally reduces the product life cycle time as the developers need to spend less time fixing the bugs and testing the app manually. So, unit testing actually saves development time and simplifies the process without compromising on qualitative inputs.
Key Benefits Of Unit Testing For Software Development
Unit testing with its immediate benefit of assuring bug-free code makes way for a whole range of benefits. It delivers a whole array of benefits for software development processes including preventing errors early, perfecting the code architecture, offering a documentation source, reducing the development cost and time by minimising the scope for manual testing and bug fixing at the later stage of development, etc.
Let us have a look at these key advantages more intently down below.
1. Ensuring The Agile Development Process
A principal advantage of unit testing is the agility it brings in the development process. Just by preventing errors and bugs early and by preventing them to get away unnoticed, unit test reduces the entire time, effort and cost required for fixing the bugs or for manual testing. In effect, this makes the entire development process agile and fast-paced. The approach of unit testing in evaluating a software product concurrently throughout the development process just fits the agile development methodology.
2. Ensuring Optimum Code Quality
Unit testing detects the logic flaws or bugs long before the application is sent for integration testing. This in effect ensures better code quality for the software. Just by focusing on the separate parts of the software code and also on the alignment with the app architecture, it leaves no leaf unturned to optimise the coding input throughout the development process.
3. Makes Changes And Integration Easier
One of the notable benefits of unit testing is that it facilitates refactoring the application code and upgrading the entire system libraries in a scheduled date later on. It helps to decipher the changes in the code that may not go well with the app design. This actually helps in better maintenance of the code.
Even when it is used to detect flaws in existing functionality, it detects and addresses the flaws perfectly. Thanks to the evaluation and thorough testing of each unit of the app the integration of the units at a later stage in the development lifecycle becomes easier.
4. It Also Becomes a Source Of Documentation
Unit testing offers very detailed documentation of the system to help developers through the process of development. The developers can easily consult this documents for knowing about the functions and how they can be integrated into an app by aligning with the app logic.
5. Easier And Faster-Debugging Process
Unit testing boosts the ease and simplicity in the process of debugging. Whenever a test fails, the developers can just debug the latest changes in the code to restore proper functioning.
6. It Brings Down Development Cost Significantly
The last but not the least advantage of unit testing is the reduced time and cost of development. As the Unit Testing allows detecting and eradicating the bugs early and right when the code of a function is being written, it drastically reduces the entire time and cost for fixing bugs at a mature stage of the development lifecycle. This in effect, helps reducing and development cost and time to a great extent.
Does your software development process need experts for unit testing? Do you need sophisticated tools and professionals for unit testing? Well, you have arrived at the right place. At CMARIX, we have expert and experienced unit testing and QA professionals to ensure optimum coding input for your application. Just feel free to drop us a message with your query.